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P.G. Wodehouse - Lethargic Man (anag.)

Lethargic Man (anag.)
Date: 2017-06-02 04:25
Subject: P.G. Wodehouse
Security: Public
In the mid 1990s, someone commented on Usenet, citing what I believe was newly discovered evidence that P.G. Wodehouse had been payrolled by the Nazis during the time he was broadcasting for them. At the time I had never read any Wodehouse myself, and decided I wasn't going to.

That is actually still the case now, but my thoughts on the subject have been changed by a session of Rafi Zarum's I went to at Limmud a year and a half ago, in which he talked about Shlomo Carlebach as "an amazing man [who] did some terrible things. It was very difficult when he was alive, but once he had died, the music and the good could live on its own. His music and his tunes became global only at that point. His death was his salvation."

On reflection, this made sense. After all, I didn't have any problems going to see a performance of Doctor Faustus by the same man who wrote The Jew of Malta. Marlowe was dead; he wasn't going to get any royalties from me or even just bask in the glory of ticket acclaim. Admittedly, being dead four hundred years isn't the same as being dead twenty, but somewhere there's got to be a cut-off point, so why not follow Rafi Zarum's suggestion for it?

(Well, maybe it's different when it's not something historical for oneself; it remains to be seen how I'll feel about listening to Rolf Harris's music once he's dead, but we'll cross that bridge when we come to it.)

So anyhow, now I've decided to stop forbidding myself from reading what by all accounts is a considerable comic talent, the only question remaining is where I should start. (By comparison, consider the Discworld books: one could (as indeed I did) start with the first one, but I would rather recommend a newcomer to try the series out with the fourth (Mort), written once Pratchett had got into his stride.)

Suggestions from afficionados?

—Originally posted on Dreamwidth, where there are comment count unavailable comments. Please comment there using OpenID or a DreamWidth account (which you no longer need an invite code to create). Though I am leaving comments enabled on LiveJournal for a bit, please don't comment here if you can do so there instead.
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curious_reader: tiger cub
User: curious_reader
Date: 2017-06-23 11:34 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Keyword:tiger cub
Roald Dahl does not like Jews just because he met one bad one in Wales. I still enjoyed his books.
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Lethargic Man (anag.): reflect
User: lethargic_man
Date: 2017-06-23 11:41 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Keyword:reflect
I have been troubled by Dahl's antisemitism; but by the time I discovered it, he was dead. My parents bought me his books when I was a child (and he was still alive), but then they also took me on holiday to Spain when it was still a dictatorship under Franco; and I wouldn't do that.
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curious_reader: Oposum
User: curious_reader
Date: 2017-06-24 22:44 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Keyword:Oposum
I had no idea about his hatred against Jews until you told me. Then I read about it how he it came to that. The internet still claims he is alive and kicking. I was surprised because I expected him dead. I guess wikipedia is not always up-to-date. Most internet website still claim that Theresa May is Prime Minister of the UK. The Labour party won and therefore Jeremy Corbyn is taking the post but that is more recent than Roald Dahl's death.
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Lethargic Man (anag.): serious
User: lethargic_man
Date: 2017-06-25 07:27 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Keyword:serious
The internet still claims he is alive and kicking. I was surprised because I expected him dead. I guess wikipedia is not always up-to-date.

Wikipedia is up-to-date: "Roald Dahl (English: /ˈroʊ.əld ˈdɑːl/,[1] Norwegian: [ˈɾuːɑl dɑl]; 13 September 1916 – 23 November 1990) was a British novelist, short story writer, poet, screenwriter, and fighter pilot" (my emphasis).

Most internet website still claim that Theresa May is Prime Minister of the UK. The Labour party won and therefore Jeremy Corbyn is taking the post but that is more recent than Roald Dahl's death.

What planet are you on? Jeremy Corbyn might have claimed he won, but actually he merely lost by a smaller margin than expected. The Conservatives failed to get a majority, but will be forming a minority government with support from the DUP. Theresa May remains Prime Minister.
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User: curious_reader
Date: 2017-06-25 17:46 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
I don't understand politics. It is a very unusual situation. Usually the party that wins chooses the Prime Minister. I hoped it would be somebody else than Theresa May. Maybe the second referendum idea is not a bad idea. People realized they had been lied to. The outcome could be different next time.
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Lethargic Man (anag.): reflect
User: lethargic_man
Date: 2017-06-23 12:13 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Keyword:reflect
On further reflection, I think you're missing the point here. The point is when you buy a book by Roald Dahl during his lifetime, you're not only paying his income, you're also saying that this is acceptable behaviour. By not doing so, you are boycotting him, you are sending a message that you will not support him unless he changes his views. But of course that only has any effect during his lifetime; therefore there's no point continuing to do so after his death. The only issue then is dealing with how you feel about buying his books.
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curious_reader: tiger cub
User: curious_reader
Date: 2017-06-24 22:47 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Keyword:tiger cub
I never bought books myself. I borrowed them from the library when I lived in London. He does not get any money from the library. When I was not living here my parents bought his books for me from here. I had no idea about this views back then.

Edited at 2017-06-24 10:48 pm (UTC)
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